It's not a hard sell to give someone a chance to feel they're using their skills to make the world a better place. In addition to working with underprivileged populations, other capacities appealing to retirees that can be done on a volunteer or part-time basis include covering for peers during vacations or family leave.
Sometimes, these placements are considered locum tenens assignments. Physicians can travel to another area to take advantage of these opportunities or do them close to home. Some professionals pick up one shift a week, others take 30-day placements, all depending on what they feel up to or have time for.
"It's a nice supplemental income for [retired physicians]," says Henderson.
Hospitals located in an area where there's a seasonal change in population, can consider hiring retired clinicians for the busy season, suggests Henderson.
Such arrangements can be especially alluring to clinicians who crave an opportunity to explore other parts of the country or spend time near family. "We'll frequently have a retired nurse talk to a recruiter and say, 'I just had a grandbaby—and I want [a placement near family] for 13 weeks,'" says Henderson. These employment situations allow clinicians to keep their medical licenses current.
Other roles clinicians have found a second life in telehealth environments or working from home doing telephone triage, or in following up with patients after appointments to make sure they understood their conditions and physicians' instructions.